First training flight today!

Preflight, taxi, run up, takeoff, climb, turns, level flight, and descent. Clouds rolled in and we had to go IFR for landing, so no practice for me. No problem. It gave me a chance to fly through the clouds in a small plane for the first time. I also took the opportunity to take a few pictures. Next flight this afternoon!

[Update] The afternoon session was even better. No pics from the air because I was flying the entire time! As expected, the ride was a lot bumpier and a lot hotter. At one point, the outside temp read 102° F at 3,500 ft. We were baking in the cockpit.

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During the flight, we worked on takeoff, steep turns, stalls, navigation, working the pattern, and landing. We had a chance to do a single touch-and-go, but had to stop on the second go-around due to a developing thunderstorm. There were two really cool things we saw - gliders in action, and a bird. There’s a lot of glider activity near Hempstead which is just northwest of the airport I’m flying from. Don’t believe me? It says so right on the map!

The bird? It was a black vulture which was thermaling at 1,500 ft. We were close enough that we both thought we were about to have a bird strike. It finally veered off about 30 feet off our left wing. Too close.

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The thunderstorms were massive, so I’m glad we were down before they hit the airport. Driving back to the hotel was more than a little sketchy.

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Tomorrow looks to be another great day for flying!